PubMed | Helmholtz Center Munich, Psychosomatics and Psychotherapy and. and University of Würzburg
Type: | Journal: Cerebral cortex (New York, N.Y. : 1991) | Year: 2015
The neuropeptide S (NPS) system contributes to the pathogenesis of anxiety. The more active T allele of the functional rs324981 variant in the neuropeptide S receptor gene (NPSR1) is associated with panic disorder (PD) and distorted cortico-limbic activity during emotion processing in healthy adults and PD patients. This study investigated the influence of NPSR1 genotype on fronto-limbic effective connectivity within the developing brain. Sixty healthy subjects (8-21 years) were examined using an emotional go-nogo task and fMRI. Fronto-limbic connectivity was determined using Dynamic Causal Modeling. In A allele carriers, connectivity between the right middle frontal gyrus (MFG) and the right amygdala was higher in older (14 years) than that in younger (<14 years) probands, whereas TT homozygotes 14 years showed a reduction of fronto-limbic connectivity between the MFG and both the amygdala and the insula. Fronto-limbic connectivity varied between NPSR1 genotypes in the developing brain suggesting a risk-increasing effect of the NPSR1T allele for anxiety-related traits via impaired top-down control of limbic structures emerging during adolescence. Provided robust replication in longitudinal studies, these findings may constitute valuable biomarkers for early targeted prevention of anxiety disorders.
PubMed | Karolinska Institutet, University of Würzburg, University of Hamburg, Goethe University Frankfurt and 4 more.
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Social cognitive and affective neuroscience | Year: 2016
Traditionally, adversity was defined as the accumulation of environmental events (allostatic load). Recently however, a mismatch between the early and the later (adult) environment (mismatch) has been hypothesized to be critical for disease development, a hypothesis that has not yet been tested explicitly in humans. We explored the impact of timing of life adversity (childhood and past year) on anxiety and depression levels (N=833) and brain morphology (N=129). Both remote (childhood) and proximal (recent) adversities were differentially mirrored in morphometric changes in areas critically involved in emotional processing (i.e. amygdala/hippocampus, dorsal anterior cingulate cortex, respectively). The effect of adversity on affect acted in an additive way with no evidence for interactions (mismatch). Structural equation modeling demonstrated a direct effect of adversity on morphometric estimates and anxiety/depression without evidence of brain morphology functioning as a mediator. Our results highlight that adversity manifests as pronounced changes in brain morphometric and affective temperament even though these seem to represent distinct mechanistic pathways. A major goal of future studies should be to define critical time periods for the impact of adversity and strategies for intervening to prevent or reverse the effects of adverse childhood life experiences.